AMERICANREVOLUTION.ORG

LETTER BOOK OF CAPTAIN ALEXANDER McDONALD,
OF THE
ROYAL HIGHLAND EMIGRANTS
January/May, 1778


To LT. HUGH FRAZIER Y.R.H.

Halifax 9th January 1778
SIR.

Inclosed I send your Abstract From the Date of Your Commission the 27th of February 1776 to the 23d February 1778 Inclusive The Balance whereof amounts to £128,,3,,3 3/4 Sterg at 4/8 pr Dr. wch. you may draw for at pleasure if you have not drawn on me prior to the Receipt of this Letter & am Sir

Y'r humble Servt


To CAPTN ALEXR CAMPBELL Y:R:H:

SIR. Halifax 10th January 1778

Inclosed I send your Abstract from the 25 of April 1777 to the 23d February 1778 inclusive The Balance whereof amounting to £167,,10,,58 Sterg at 4/8 pr. Dr. you may draw for at pleasure if you have not hitherto drawn on me and am Sir

Your hble Servant.

P.S. My Compliments to Mrs. Campbell.


To ENSIGN CHRISR. SEATON Y:R:H.
Halifax 10th January 1778
SIR

Inclosed I Send your Abstract from the Date of your Commission the 9th of April 1777 to 23d of February 1778 inclusive The Balance whereof amounts to
£38,,11d Sterling at 4/8 the Dr. wch you may draw for
at pleasure if you have not drawn on me before the
Receipt of this & am Sir

Your humble Servt.


To ROBT Mc KENZIE ESQR.
Halifax 10th January 1778
DEAR SIR

Opportunity serves so rare & so seldom to HeadQrs that it has occasioned the delay of my Answering Your favor of the 28th May in regard to our Expectations I believe there is not a Captain in this Battn but knows as well as any paymr. in the Army what is their just due and if I am a Competent judge of their Sentiments None of them wd. wish to receive more than it they claim no right to any more merit than what they are possessd. of and that I believe not inferior to any of their rank in the British Service and I believe none of us would Wish to break through or Step over General rules or Regulations And as to the Contingent Accot. wch. you charge me with having overdone You know I Sent it to you for inspection unsigned. As for the Offreckongs. I have nothing to do with them. I expect to hear further from you on the Subject When the Accots transmitted were Anatomized These Accots. I recd together with the Order on Mr. Turner to take up all temporary Warrants granted by Genl Massy prior to the 24th of April last in all wch. I hope I have acted agreable to your orders to wch I am always willing to pay due regard & obedience and will be happy to have your Instructions from time to time and to Correct any Errors you may find in my Accots and you may believe me when I tell you sincerely that I wd. not for all the Sums that has runed thro' my hands act a part that wd. make you entertain a mean opinion of me by Endeavoring to draw more money than I had a just right to receive for the use of the Regiment - As for Mr Morden's Commission in our Regimt if he has it with him it will Clear that up I mean the date of it.

I have no doubt promised that Accots wd. be regular & I hope they will be found so & wd. rather Act from my own Sense such as it is than from Sanguine Expectations.

As for my Son It wd. make me happy that he had a Commission in this Regiment there are Vacancies just now and I dare say your kind interposition in his favor might procure him an Ensigncy. In regard to my own promotion I don't see any Appearance of it - Indeed if matters were happily Settled A Sinecure office of two or three hundred a year for Life wd suit the Interest Of my family better than looking out for promotions after Coming to the Age of Fifty of wch. two & thirty Yrs. long and faithful Services but will be thankful for whatever Genl Howe will think proper to do for me & I place great Confidence from your kind officer in keeping his Excellency in mind of me As Delicacy forbids that I should encroach upon his precious time by any more representations or Memorials. Captn Mur. McLean of our Regimt who is going to head Qrs on Express business will lay before you some Contingent Accots and the last Year's Arrears also a General State of what money has been recd from first to last for the use of Regimt I Mean this Battalion and wt Money agreable to the Establishment of the Bn we shd have recd The Balance Still due will Shew that we have not overdrawn Considering the Nos that have been listed for this Bn and that the Bounty Money and Contingencies as well as Subsistance & Arrears are included Except what Captn McLean will lay before you drawn out upon one Sheet of paper I will not encroach any farther upon your time. Wishing you all manner of happiness & Success believe me to be Dr Sir with Sincere regard & Esteem Yr Most obedt & most humble Servant


To MR McADAMS.

Halifax 11th Jany 1778

My Dr Sir.
I recd. yrs. of the 1st Decr last by Mr. Reed am Sorry for poor Mr. McDonald's Situation. As for Mrs. Groesbeck's affair it is a matter of no consequence to me as I wd as soon settle it wth you as any body else. False representations are no strange things nowadays.

I am Sorry you have not met with Mr. McDonald the Conductor who has the Managemt of the house tho' I hope you have recd the money before now.

I should be glad Captn McLeod wd receive the Rent of the house on Stattin Island from Decker he was to pay £50. a year, and there is now three Years rent due the 1st April. As I dont know how matters are situated with you at present I am at a loss wt to write you in regard to my own Affairs

Should you think a power of Attorney Necessary I wd send you one. I beg leave to Introduce to yr friendship Captn Murdoch McLean of our Battalion a worthy sensible honest man. Should he have Occasion for any money when there his Draft on me will meet with an honor As I am sure he will not draw or go beyond bounds for his forthcoming Subsistce from the 24th ffeby 1778. If he should chance to make any recruits a list of their Names with their Attestations & a Recruitg Accot must be transmitted at the same time if he should draw any money on their Accot. From the Rebells News in this part of the World we are taught to believe that You are Surrounded this time by Yankees. Be that as it will we are anxious about the Situation of Affairs at present. Mrs McDonald joins me in kind Complimts to Mrs McAdams & you Doctr Middleton & all friends & am My Dr Sir

Yrs Sincerely


To CAPTN ALLAN McDONALD.

Halifax 12th January 1778

DR COUSIN.

Since my last of the 31st of Decemr ulto wch will be delivered to you by Your Son Ronald who from some hints I recd is going there not only wth Anxiety to see you but with some other Views to get you to lay out the little Money you have in my hands in purchasing a higher Commission for himself or Charles a Manuvre I wd highly approve of if you could afford it, but I have already given you a hint upon this head & I again tell you that I think yr three sons extremely well provided for considering their Age especially if this Regt be Established as I hope it is by this time. Ronald is already in a very good corps & pretty far advanced & probably may have a Chance for a Company before this work is at an End. Charles is a fine young fellow for whom I have the Sincerest regard but the income of a General Offr wd be rather small for him, if he could get it, he is very Sensible & very Clever when Sober but rather unhappy when he is any ways disguised in Liquor but yr presence here might be the means of altering him & putting a Stop to it. These Circumstances are as galling to me to relate as they can possibly be to you to hear them but I think it my Duty from the Sincerest Friendship to acquaint you with them. Were so near Relations indifferent to me I might laugh as others do and pass it over in silence. I beg You wd not let Ronald or Charles know any part of this intelligence but with the power & authority of a parent Command Ronald at his peril to tell you the truth of all he knows Concerning Charles & his Behaviour. I have nothing earthly to lay to his Charge but wt the Effects of Liquor is the Cause of & a propensity to Extravagance wch I wish to God he was cured of As no man has a right to Spend more than his income & not even that it being much more honorable for a young Offr to have a Guinea in his pocket to lend to his Comrade than to be obliged to borrow one from him & I beg you wd keep a tight hand & learn them to live upon their pay Especially as you have other things to do with Yr money & other people to provide for. In Short I wish you was here for several good Reasons. This will be delivered you by your old acquaintance Cape Murdh McLean a Sensible facetious clever honest worthy fellow. As its Supposed you are acquainted with all the Scotch folks in New York you will no doubt introduce Capt McLean to them all.

Wishing you a Speedy & Safe arrival here wth great Good news from the Southward I remain Dr Cousin

Yrs Sincerely


[To DONALD McLEAN.]

Halifax 12th Jany 1778

DR DONALD

Capt Murd. McLean shewed me a paragraph in one of your Lres. The Accot you mention there is about nine times more than it stands with me be it will it must remain so till I have the pleasure of Seeing you and the world gets a little more settled - when please God it will be in my power as much as it is my wish & inclination to settle matters with you & every body Else to their entire satisfactn. Pray have you got married yet or are the Children Squalling about the house when you are so damned craving for money pray write by every Opportunity & let me hear from you in the old friendly way that we used to Correspond & if you have no time to write me all the news send me all the Newspapers. Give my Compts to Mr. Rivington & I wd be glad to have his paper by every Opportunity & will Endeavor to get more Customers from this place. Wishing you all manner of happiness & success I am Dr Donald yr Real friend & huble Servt

P.S. Captn McLean will give you all the news from this place.


FROM CAPT. JOHN McDONALD TO CAPTN R. McKINNON.

Halifax 7th Feby 1778

My GOOD FRIEND

So, my dear Fellow, thou art at length Caught, weltering in the Pangs, wherewith thou hast so frequently afflicted thy neighbors - O Triump ! do I live (: or is it the Phantom only of a pleasant dream:) to see a flanking company picked & the Captain Stung to the quick by the very circumstance, whereby with unrelenting & contemptuous cruelty he tortured his regimental & feeling (:tho' otherwise much inferior:) Brethern - Sweet Goddess - Retributive justice, wch thus torments the tormentor, Grateful pleasure, sufficient revenge, for the best piper that ever sounded the Chanter.

To see flanking heroes at drawn daggers about Horaces Lana Caprina is a Spectacle truely worthy of Mars & Magpies. - Behold they fight Spectators & Battalion-men clear the field & see fair play - Glorious conflict ! In the language of our Celtic Bards : Voggan a Voggan whreggan o Whreggan tobbar fihr Niske a Maddan gach creigge-forma vreig i vachagh ehd foho gonna Suillen forma whruoye i rachagh ehd foho gonna Glunien - Thus no doubt our heroes wd fight - But in that event Spectatum admissirisum teneatis amici - To me will be reserved the merry task of celebrating the victors in doggrel, Burlesque or heroic Rhime - In the mean time Transported in the whirlwand of whimsical fancy, to the verdant heights of windsor what do I see & hear ? methinks a Stag Majestic passing to & fro, from hill to hill, with slow & sullen step - his awful head highreared - indignant he Snuffs the wind - shakes his tremenduous Croichk in the Whistling air & Says "shall I thus be used? "No, sooner will I resign - Sooner descend to mix
"with the inferion leaders of our Croud This shall be
"my revenge; for who else so light of heels to scamper
"& command the chosen band that warms and defends "the Herd from Ambush."

Stately & hastily outsteps a veteran stag as yet of fury brisk & lofty mien - Prince of the herd and thus accosts the angry Grumbler; "To me the Mighty stag of Duimochtir lately gone in quest of more Certain pasture: to me he left his numerous flock in charge - descended of the Royal harts of Reshpoll & Glenheurich, forests innumerable have I traversed oft have I Skiped & frisked before the admiring love sick dams crowned always & by them preferred into streams & ponds my fellows oft I plunged to quench their disappointed fires - To our Race I yearly add (: & oftener:) a swift & virile Progeny (: not Hermaphrodites profane:) for this let me referr to September last & appear to future July - This high Cabber, spread into branches, ten & five, proclaims my right to Wisdom, Dignity & Sway - I know then, proud Stag of Cullihun mine is command, Aeconomy, & transposition Thine & ilk inferior Stags, in your respective posts, obedience, & acquiescence else were lost - For cats it is for snarling curs and Chickens to snap at each buzzing gnat & troublesome Musketto but trifling incidents, thy soul must not be Stung O ! Magnanimous Guardian of our Lee wing - Continue then (: not a word more:) Nimble as Silver heels or wing footed mercury, Our left, our Right, our front, & rear to hover on - to pass us safe from Dallags, bloody hounds & leader pills, thru plains, defiles, woods, Swamps, & hills Thus, Since thou seemest a Stag with some thing of the human cast, may Success henceforth & true Sons reward thy pure loves - Be roast beef & Claret thy repast.

Here the Phantoms vanished & I awoke found myself with cap & night gown - pen ink & paper by me alongside a table - before a rousing fire in my extensive bed room.

But my dear Ronald why would you at once give up the Compy in the Major's absence witht ever considering the consequence - what reason can you pretend for getting into such humor: The fact is it seems before the Major's departure, & indeed, I'm told before your last removal to Windsor, it had been agreed upon to Exchange a light Infantry man above Size for a Grendr. below size - There are now several men above size in your Compy - The Grenadiers demanded their Complimt (: wch by the by they have been doing every other muster since I knew them & after all there is something always a wanting:) The prest method of compleating our flanking compt by an order of the Majors is that laid down in Captn Cuthbertson's Book Vizt the Heroes give into the Command'g off'r a list of such as they pitch upon in the difft Comp's by Seniority & regular Rotation of the Compy whose turn it is, has none fit, the next furnishes & instead of the one of the Compy whose turn it was - In addition to all this a sort of court, I know not by wt name, of the offrs sit on the choice approve or reject it according to propriety, until at last a proper & equitable choice is fixed on & receives the sanction of the officers on the Occasion in question the heroes gave in a list of double the No wanted that there might be room for the Choice. Among them were part of the men above size of your compy - The whole were paraded as well as those to be turned of the Grenadiers - Here the heroes were excluded from interferring farther, & Captn Macdonald took the settling of the remaining part on himself accordingly he sett aside for them the men he judged fit for that company Without permitting them to object.

In the No. was that man wch. it is said you had formerly agreed to be exchanged & none more of yours. In lieu you recd one more adapted to appearance for your business - As for morality your Comy can always give us tit for tat - Upon the whole so impartially & equitably was that choice conducted that I the most jealous and averse to modes formerly used on Occasions of the kind, because always worst treated, had not a word to say.

Would you as Captn of the light comy keep a man fit to be a Grenadr ? That wd surely be reversing the Common Ideas of Distinction between them. Would as an old offr strike out agst a point done by the Commang officer & throw up in that case where is the regard to Subordination, the most capital point of discipline ? wd it not be exhibiting a fine example to our young friends? & in our prest Situation wd it not be dangerous ? Besides as you may expect to command on some occasion or other it would on any unguarded Occurrence, furnish the greater handle for Sarcasm; for I recollect you to have done a very strong thing in regard to myself, tho, the moment this last letter of it is out of my pen, I forget it.

I hope you do not think your Resignation of the L. Compy wd be executing any degree of real revenge to the Battalion as if none else tolerably fit could be found for it - There are in the Regt old & young offrs in point of service - The Latter sure enough cannot pretend to the experience & Merit of the former, notwithstanding we will undertake to do our duty & I for my part think as much of myself am as proud, huffy fiery & Combustible as the best of you and sure am I that is enough for any officer. Is it not ? answer from what you know of yourself.

As for your Resolution to acquiesce in holding any one of the Battn Comps that may fall to yr Share On the Score of their not being worth cavilling about If it does no more, it shows at least your Condescension - But give me leave to say for the honor of the Battn that probably you are not very well acquainted wth all the men that form it or if the Battn is so bad, it has not been rendered quite so much so, until it sent repeated draughts into the flanking Comps and recd Nos from them in return, wch last have not been rendered unworthy or at least unfit for being in the flank. Comps from Battles Sieges or Marches - However I will be previously candid enough with you to say, that in case you persist in the Resolution of quitting the Light Comy & if you should be kind enough to pitch on my Battalion Comy for yourself, I shall not quit but with my life Until I shall have been informed of the Rules of the Army so far as to know that in such an Event you Shall have a right to lay Your hands on any other Compy than that of the Captn who goes to the Light Infantry, the No of wch may easily be altered according to your Rank in the list of Captains.

Pardon me, my Dear friend, for being so free because I think your State of mind requires it. I happened unluckily, for the first time for a long while back, to have as much time on hand, as Suffices to Scribble this letter, & I enjoyed your being out of humour on this Occasion so exquisitely, that for my life I could not refrain triumphing & giving it to you. The best remedy is not to give me the like handle again - If you shall have been as much exasperated as to call me out I will rather make any Concessions for I declare I am not in a fighting mood nor will until the Campaign opens, & then, I hope it will not be with my friends One of whom I flatter myself you are. Lay me home in kind or in any Manner you think fit, fighting excepted. You Recollect what McNeil of Watersay said when a fiery Gentleman challenged & then pursued him with a Small Sword - There is not a word of news currt here nor do I know that ever there will provided we agree among ourselves, for they Seem to have absolutely forgot us at head Quarters. Pray let not you & I furnish this Article of news from this Quarter -The Major I hope is near England by this time he will be in good time & I think it rather lucky that he goes from hence - Most people prophecy Success to him - at least if he is not Successful he knows what to do - Best Compts to Mrs McKinnon and Miss Campbell & her Brother - write me -
Yours Sincerely
Captn. R. McKinnon Jno McDonad

Command'g the L:I: C'oy of 2d Bn Y.R.H.


To CAPTn ALLAN McDONALD.

Halifax 19th feby 1778

The above is a Copy wch I intended to send by Captn Murdh McLane but he departed in such a hurry that I could not get it finished. Since wch time I have nothing new to tell you only the Departure of our worthy Major who left us the 27th of January & hope is now Safe in London where he will insist upon the fate of our Regiment before he leaves it. So it is to be hoped that two months will Satisfy our Anxiety & curiosity.

I sent my two Eldest boys along with him to the Care of Wm. Macdonald of Edinburgh and to be sent to the Highlands for one or two Years if he approves of it.

I furnished your Son Ronald with five half Joannis wch I placed to your Accot. as he expected to get an Order from you for that purpose & I was obliged within these few days to Accommodate Charles with above £10 Sterg he has by the Management of your Compy the 3 Contingent men wch is equal to £27.9 Sterg a year & £10 paid him out of your Baggage & Forrage Money by order of Major Small If all this is not Sufft to Support Chars what will other poor Subalterns do who has not a farthing but their bare Subsistance.

I understand that Charles & Ronald are entirely agst your joining the Regiment I dont know wt good reason they can have for it but One thing I am sure of it is absolutely necessary that you should be as near them as possible to overawe their Conduct & assist them with your good Advice & without you clearly see that you can do better for yourself by staying where you are I wd earnestly recommend it to you to join the Regt as soon as possible with all the Offrs & Recruits you can possibly bring along with you As well for the above Reasons as for the Character of the Regimt As the more there are together of us the more Respectable Appearance we'll make & of Course the better Chance we'll have to compleat our wishes of Establishment.

Bad as this place was always reckoned This certainly the Most peaceable Corner now in America & if you can by any Means obtain a safe Conduct for Mrs Macdonald & McLeod you might order them to follow you to this place.

I have no more to add but to assure you that I am Dr Cousin

Yr Real friend & h'ble Servant


To Wm McADAM, ESQR

Halifax 19th Feby 1778
DR SIR

Since my last of the 11th January I am only to inform you that Major Small left us the 27th of that Month & hope he is now safe in London where he will determine the fate of our Regimt before he leaves it. If favorable unto our wishes will be always happy to continue to serve our King and Country but if otherwise fully determined to drop the Service rather than be on a footing with provincials after faithfully serving both some ten some twenty some above thirty years in Established Regiments with Reputation & honor. This resolution however you may keep to yourself till we hear how matters turn out.

I send you inclosed a bill upon Captn Mac Intosh paymr 2d Battn 71st Regimt drawn by the Quarter Master of that Battalion who was prisoner wth the Rebels at New England & came here in a Cartel & as he goes by this Opportunity to join his Regiment he will Certainly take care that his draft will meet with due Honor.

The Cash I Advanced for men of that Regimt before and wch they were not so very ready to pay I have recd here now by order of Genl Massy by whose orders I had Supplied these men and taken them under my Care and if they have paid it to you since I had the pleasure of hearing from you last you will be pleased to return it to them in order to prevent any further Altercation or Confusion in Accots. If Captn Maclean is there Still & Expects to return this way you may Advance him wt Money he may have occasion for under the same Restrictions in my former Lre.

Mrs Macdonald who desires her kind love to you and Mrs MacAdam brot me a little boy last September and she has the assurance to tell me that She will have another next July A rare Instance of Living in a good Fish Country. I wish this may find you in a humour to relish jokes and as we are Starving here for want of news and full of anxiety to hear from head Quarters You cannot possibly do a more Generous action than let me hear from you by every Opportunity.

If my worthy friend Capn Wm McLeod is yet alive (for I never could hear from him) and is in want of any money let him have from one to a hundred pounds his draft on me for that Sum will meet with due honor. If matters are like to go right I will endeavor to see Statten Island this Summer to see my affairs there put to rights. This with my kind love to Mrs MacAdam You & all friends I remain Dr Sir

Your very hble Servant


To CAPTN. MURD. MACLEAN.
Halifax 19 Feby 1778
DR SIR

Our most Worthy friend the Major left us the 27th January ulto. with whom went passengers on board the Millford Captn Johnston of the Marines, Captn McDonds Brother, Mrs Wentworth & my two boys they Sailed in Comy with the Fox, the Storeship & three more.

In Regard to the Regimt Matters are going on as usual. Agreable to the Major's Desire I send you Copies of the Contingent Accots and a Copy of the General State of the Cash recd from first to last for the Battalion and whats' due the Battalion agreable to the Establishment and Charging Bounty Money for the No of men that were Inlisted also giving Credit for the Contingent Accots wch makes a Considerable diffce in the Balance due the Regimt as you shall see by the Accots

I wish you may be able to obtain an order as well for your own Accot as for us all to get the Non Effective money hitherto not drawn for by the Captains of the Regiment Especialy as there will be a Sufficiency left in the hands of Government to pay the Expence of Levying the Number wanting to Complete the Regiment but if you have obtained leave to go home I am afraid this will Scarcely mistake you in wch case I have directed Mr MacAdam to retain this packet in his hands untill further Instructions from me. If you should not be able to obtain leave to go home it would Make me very unhappy because I believe it was yr own Earnest wish & Desire otherwise I should be Extremely happy how soon you and all the Offrs & men You can bring along with you made their appearance here As the More there are of us here together the more respect we will command at any rate I hope you will not forget to write to me and let me know how Matters are going on at head Quarters
- As for the affairs of your Company in particular I will referr you to Captn Jno & Lt Lachn Maclean. Every Company in the Regiment is equally as much my Concern as my own and I will on all Occasions Endeavor to do them equal justice but to prevent Grumbling is more than my predecessor could do tho' ten times more Capable to command a regimt than I can pretend to be.

I am Sorry to inform you that this moment Mr Ogilvie of 71st Regiment told me that Genl Massey was to quit this province soon & that Governor Arbuthnot Told him so I have no time to inquire into this affair immediately but if there is any truth in it You will know it at head Quarters.

I will always continue to write You by Every opportunity and Conclude this wth Wishing you all manner of happiness & Success and with Mrs McDonds as well as my kind respects to you I am Dr Murdoch

Your Sincere friend & Well wisher


To COL. Wm SHERRIFF.

Halifax 19th February 1778

SIR.

I take the Liberty of troubling you at this time to inform you of the Circumstances of the Bearer of this Coming to our Regimt some time last Spring before Major Small's Arrival here he Offerred himself to be a drum in the Regiment & upon Examination found he was an Apprentice bound to one of Captain Spry's Chief Carpenters I would not Attest him till I heard further about it Soon after recd a verbal message from Captn Spry desiring the boy to be set at Liberty wch I immediately consented to Not knowing all this time that he was an offrs child without father or Mother.

Soon after this Major Small arrived and the boy still persisting to come into the Regimt the Major was informed who he was And it Seems knowing his Father & Mother Obtained Captn Spry's leave to enter him as a Volunteer in wch Station he has been looked upon & treated by all offrs in the Regt Before Major Small departed hence for London he consented & indeed advised him to go to head Quarters & put himself under Patronage & Protection to see what You could do for him. He is really a pretty boy and it is a pity he should be lost for Want of Care and there is nothing can be done for him here unless he was Appointed to Goreham or Leggs' Corps who, I believe, has officers enough to command what men they have

Last Year I had Sent an Accot to Major Small in order to be presented to you for Horses Waggons Scows & Boats of mine that were taken into the Service & Never heard of since or any thing for them. It is true I cannot Expect that you will pay money Without Voucher and Authentic Accots and its true that they were in the Service & that they & their Service are a loss to me. Mr Robinson can Certify for the horses & Waggons & one of my men Servts who I believe has done very well for him, tho' he did not Study my interest as well as his own his Name is David Blair Mr Lawrence the Ship Carpenter can Vouch for the Scow Upon the whole tho' my loss in these Articles was above a hundred pounds that Cury. it is but a trifle of my other losses since these unhappy Troubles began. A thousand Guineas will not repair all the damages & losses at my place on Staten Island & after my Thirty two Years long Services how am I like to be rewarded in place of being a field Officer in the Army which I have a just title to I find myself Now only a Captain of Provincials in wch Station it seems I must content myself & wait for better times. Wishing You all manner of happiness I remain Sir

Yr Most Obedt & hble Servt.


To MAJOR SMALL

Halifax 10th March 1778

DR MAJOR.
We are all in the same State you left us only Gen'l Massey talks of leaving this place but knows not by whom he is to be succeeded. A Rumour goes about that One Major Genl. Cunningham is comg to be Governor of the province & Commander in Chief of all the troops in it.

Not the least Accots from the Southward & we are here at a loss how to act Not knowg whether we are to be attacked in the Spring or not. We know nothing of what's become of Captn Murdoch Whether he is safe arrived at head Qrs or Drove to the West Indies,or by this time in England.

I have wrote you lately by a Schooner that went Straight from here to London giving you an Accot of Genl Macleans disaster havg been cast away in the River St. Lawrence on his way Striving to go to England and had a very Narrow Escape with his Life. I really don't know but he will make an attempt to come over by land to the River St. Johns.

I Send you inclosed a Return of Articles of Clothing directed for Colo. McLean's Corps but I believe designed for the 1st Battn & indeed they are all Articles that are wanting for your Battn & if you think proper its my opinion you should order the Same Article for Article to be Shipped from Glasgow for Quebec as they May arrive there as Early in the Spring as they can from this place besides the trouble of reshipping & paying Freight for them & the Danger of the Enemy & the Sea & you will have nothing more to Draw besides but the Plaids of this Bn to be sent here. But all these matters & things depends upon how Matters are going on at home of wch I expect to hear from you before this comes to hand & Afterwards your Directions concerning the inclosed return.

I am sorry to tell you poor Mrs Campbell is relapsed & not like to get the better all the rest of your friends are very well but full of anxiety for their fate you may believe & Mrs Macdonald, who desires her kind love to you is very Anxious, for the fate of her two boys of whom however we expect to hear by the 1st Opportunity.

I am Determined to remit every farthg of officer's Money that is in my hands to Wm McDonald at Edinburgh thinking it more secure than in my trunk Especially as I can pay any of those offrs that are prisrs or absent by drawing upon him for the amt of their Balances as they arrive & join the Regiment.

Just as I was about finishing this letter the Qr. Master reported to me that, he Suspected the Bale containing the hose to be a little damaged however does not think it much & I ordered him to Examine it more Narrowly & Air it in order to Save it from any further Damage. This with my kind wishes for yr health & prosperity & am Dr Major

Yrs Sincerely


To LIEUT. FITZGERALD.

Halifax April 18th 1778

DR SIR.
Not having hear'd from you Since your Departure from this place and not knowing where you are or whether You are in the land of the living or not I only write this at all hazards to let you know that all your friends in the Regiment are well and without entering into the least detail of Business further then ordering you upon receipt of this to join the Regiment with all Speed with whatever Recruits you may have at the time by the first safe Conveyance.

Should the Money I advanced at your Departure run Short, you are at Liberty to draw upon me for whatever Sums Shall be absolutely Necessary for Carrying on the Service in wch you are Employed & no more As Contingent Accots seems to meet with very great Difficulties at Head Qrs & it is a doubt whether any at all will be allowed.

If Lieut Bliss is there Give him my kind Compliments and tell him I won't write till I hear from him. Major Small left on the 27th Jany for England and Expect every hour to hear from him or see himself in person when we shall know the fate of the Regimt -

The last Accots from Head Qrs. brings no Material News Only by a letter from Genl Pigot we are informed that Major Small is now Lt. Colol. but does not say Appointed by Genl Howe or from whom or Whether to this or any other Regt

I expect to see you soon with a hundred brave fine fellows at least untill then & after

Believe me to be Dr Fitz Yrs Sincerely


To B. GENERAL McLEAN.

Halifax 21st Aprile 1778
DR GENERAL -

This goes by Mr McQuary, a son of Ulva's, in regard to whom Capt John McLean writes you, & by whom he sends the N. York Paper that contains a more full Account of the Spirit of the Nation on Occasion of Burgoyne's disaster, & the Great Number of New Regiments that are levying, than I could give in this Letter, & therefore I beg leave to referr You to the Same -

General Massey informs of a Paragraph in a Letter from General Pigot mentioning that Major Small is a Lieutenant Colonell, without Adding in What Regiment, or Whether the Appointment is from home, or Made in this Country -

By a Schooner Arrived from Boston about an hour Agoe we Are given to Understand that General Burgoyne is Sailed for Britain twenty three days agoe, but that the remains of his Army are sent back into the Country & to be detained under futile pretences by order of Congress - No farther News has as Yet transpired -

I beg leave to draw on You for the Amount of the inclosed Account in favor of Capt Allan Macdonell of this Battalion now with You, Whom I expect to join us here by the first Safe Conveyance, with his Nephew Lieutenant John Macdonell, as it Seems the Exchange between Lochbuy & him does Not take place - You Will Understand the reason of My drawing from the inclosed Account & whom You fall to charge With the Money.

Poor Capt Duncan Campbell's wife died a few days Agoe, & has left him a Most distressed helpless Widower with five Children, allmost all infants - We are greatly At a loss What plan to Advise him to - we think he Should goe home with them by the first Safe Conveyance, & leave them in Some Town in Scotland in good hands to receive their Schooling, & their Condition to be looked into once or twice a Year by his Brother or Some Other prudent friend I hope that As he was drove from home Suffered Shipwreck & loss for the Service & had Also his wife turned Adrift, by which She lost her health, Government will allow Something for them As well As Other Refugees that May help their Education - Your Assistance for this End will be Usefull, & No doubt he would write You by this Occasion, but that he lives at
Windsor -

Some time Agoe there arrived here in the Annual Ship of the Province A Number of Regimental Shoes, Shirts, hose & Bonnets &c. without a Letter or Invoice but the Bales & Boxes directed for Lieut Col McLean's Regiment, or in his Absence to the Officer Commanding it at Halifax - As we are Much in want of these Articles I have taken the Liberty of Making Use of them, more especially as it is Surmised we may be called on Service - But not knowing but they may have been designed for Your Battalion - Canada, lest You Might suffer a disappointment, I wrote Major Small to order Out for You the like Number in that event - Thus you will have them Allmost As Soon & early as I could venture to Send these to You, considering I could not risk them without a Convoy: the Danger of loss will be less upon the Whole, & we are Served thereby - We expect Capt Murdoch & Kingsburgh here Soon - Gordon & Crowder the Money Agents at New York rejected any Sort of Contingent Account for this Battalion - refused to permitt us to draw the Kings Bounty for our Men, or to give any thing for a Serjt. Major, drill Serjt or Quarter Master Serjeant, giving for a reason that Provincial Corps are Not intitled to these Allowances - But I hope General Gage's Beating Instructions to You, will one day give a turn to these Matters that they do not look for - Major Small is exactly twelve Weeks gone from hence & we shortly will look out for Agreable News from him - Mr. Lundy is here by Exchange - the Officers here Are Well & join in Complts to you & the Other Gentlemen of Your Battn General Massey Continues our Good friend as formerly - I am &c.


To CAPT. ALLAN McDONELL 2D BATTN Y.R.H. NOW
IN CANADA.

DEAR SIR

Inclosed You have a Draut on Brigadier General McLean with an Accot & Vouchers to Support it - I hope or the Officer Commanding will make no difficulty to pay it to You - If they are Not paid into Your hands, the Draut must be protested & returned here in Course, as otherwise I know Not how to get My Money, tho I cannot imagine any difficulty can be made, As I have paid this Money, & I have no Connection, or Any thing to do with any private Accounts Subsisting between our two Commandants, Whatever their Nature may be & I want the Draut paid to you in hard Cash - as it will Answer So far in payt of Your Subsistence in my hands, & this opportunity of remitting it is lucky -

I expect to see You & Your Nephew here immediately As we are distressed for Officers So Many being Absent, & that I Understand John's exchange with Lochbuy will not take place - I wish You had come here instead of Going with Burgoyne - Complts to the two Ronalds - I will be Much Obliged to You for Intelligence of Mrs. McLeod My Sister in law's Situation - Capt John McDonald joins in Compts to you -
I am &c.

Halifax 21st Aprile 1778.


To __ __

Halifax 8th May 1778

SIR
I am sorry we did not seem to understand One another when I asked the favor of you for one of your Drummers to Act as Drum Major for ours whilst the two Corps remained here I certainly meant he should act as Drum Major in every part of the duty and to pay him as Drum Major also to Wear our Drum Major's Coat and Bonnet whilst it was your pleasure to let him Stay with us & tho' you was so very genteel to decline giving him Additional pay it was nevertheless my intention of Making it up to the poor fellow in the End I think he might easily serve us & Superintend Your Fifers if this favor can be possibly granted it will not only oblige me very much but also Major Small & the whole Corps & if Matters have succeeded with him According to Our hopes and Wishes we Expect to see him soon with a Drum and Fife Major I am Sir Your most Obedient & humble Servant


To JNO. OGILVIE, ESQR.

Halifax 1st June 1778

DR SIR.
I have no news to entertain you with. Captn Murdoch Maclean is at Head Quarters since the Month of January last and Major Small in London and I have not heard from either one or the other to my great Surprise and Astonishment. I allow that the Major may have a great deal of business upon hand but cannot forgive him for not writing me a few lines if it was for Nothing else but to satisfy my Curiosity he knowing very well how Anxious I was about himself as well as the fate of the Regiment also to hear of the safe Arrival and health of my Children who went home along with him - besides all these things I think he Should have something to Communicate to me about the affairs of the Regiment having had the Command of them since the first Man of them was inlisted the Superintending their discipline & the Managing their Accots

I don't write by this Opportunity as believing it would not overtake him in London indeed we expect him every hour here and I suppose Genl Maclean is with you by this time whether he is or not You will be pleased to charge to his Accot £58. Sterling wch he order'd me to pay to Geo. Turner Esqr. Deputy paymaster General of this province and to charge to Capt Duncan Campbell's Accot wch I did accordingly & when I was making a final Settlement about the 24th. April with Capt Campbell he to my great Surprise produced Gen'l Maclean's ample Rect for this and other monies paid him at New York of wch I send you a true Copy. You will also be pleased to charge Genl Maclean £34,,8,,4 Cash advanced by his order to Lt Chars Forbes of the 14th Regiment and for wch Lt Forbes Gave him a draft for £50 Sterg upon his Father & place both Sums Vizt £58 & 34,,8,,4 to the Credit of my Accot and should you learn that my Sister is in any want you may let her have twenty Guineas and Charge the Same to my Accot

The people at Head Quarters are Striving to keep this Regimt upon the footing of provincials to wit Captn Mackenzie & the Money Agents Crowder and Gordon they insist upon that we have no right to any contingent Accots poundage or King's Bounty for the Soldiers as it is called or in short any thing in the World but bare pay. I should be extremely happy if you could let me know whether or not Government makes the same provision for us as for other Regiments. I will send you inclosed a Sketch of the Accot as it stands in my books wt is due to us agreable to the Establishment of other Regiments & wt we have recd by wch It will appear we have Short drawn Six or Seven thousand pounds proceeding entirely from Meer delicacy for fear that our overdrawing may be detrimental to the Regiment and am Dr Sir

Your Most Obedt & hble Servt


To Wm MACDONALD, ESQR

Halifax 1st June 1778

DR SIR.
I had the pleasure to hear of the safe arrival of Major Small and my Children at London and I hope Soon to have the further pleasure of hearing from you of your own & family's Wellfare and their safe arrival at Edinburgh. I inclose you herewith the seconds of the two Bills I remitted you before wch I hope has been duly honored and I must sincerely ask your pardon for the trouble I give you being an entire Stranger to you but if I never should have it in my power the Children may probably have it in theirs to return you or yours for every kindness you Shall shew them with gratitude.

I have a terrible itching desire to recover the old paternal Estate, and I beg that you wd with all the rest of your Goodness to take the trouble to purchase me a State Lottery Ticket, and Should it turn out twenty thousand pounds you can venture to speak to Mr. Riddle upon the Subject you will no doubt laugh heartily to think what method I plan out to get money in Order to purchase Estates but let matters turn out as they will, you will be pleased to purchase the Ticket. We are all happy to hear of the Spirit that reigns Among our Countrymen to preserve their rights and Liberties against all their Enemys whatsoever and to bring the deluded Americans to a Sense of their duty to their Mother Country I do assure you they are a good deal Startled at the Preparations making at home but greatly Elevated with the hopes of a French War wch Indeed we are now told is quite unavoidable. I shall say no more on this Subject but beg my kind respects may be acceptable to Mrs Macdonald Self &. I am Dr Sir
Your most obedt & most humble Servant


To REVD DR JNO MACDONALD.

Halifax 1st June 1778

DR BROTHER.

I have only to tell you that I and my family and yr old worthy friend Capt Jno Macdonald are all well in health and in spirits we have not heard from Head Quarters these three Mos. therefore Cannot give you any Accot of what our Army are doing with the Rebels to the Southward as I am but a very indifferent Writer you need not expect a long letter from me and as you are an Extraordinary good one I beg that your Correspondence will be oftner than hitherto especially on Accot of the Children if they are Safely arrived in my last to you I beged that you should meet them at Edinburgh and left it entirely to you and Wm. Macdonald to dispose of them as you and he should think best I am all impatience and Anxiety till I hear from you and will say no more at present but that I am Dr Brother

Yours Sincerely


To LT LUNDIN.

Halifax 9th June 1778 a Copy

DEAR SIR
Understanding your present Situation to be Extremely Disagreeable I have by Genl Massy's leave ordered Mr Robertson to take the command of your party & relieve you - The reason I did not at first propose your going on that Command was the apprehension of what I now finde to be the case. Lieutt Alexr mcDonald lies very ill of his former ailment in his side, for which has undergone an Operation.

His brother on that account, and because he expects his parents every Day whom he has not Seen for many years - Your last leters perhaps frightening him at the same time - Declines going to take the post of Honor out of his turn - from all this you may perceive howe difficult it is for me to relieve you, & that however I have Done my best.

Whatever orders you have you will now Deliver to Mr Robertson, & every point, as far as depends on you, relative to the Men you will please eithere Sattle, or leave on the way of being Sattled by him previous to your Departure.

As Mr Robertson is to relieve you and us by Major Smalls orders, you are appointed to Capt Duncan Campbels Company, you will please, how soon you have Sattled matters to Sett out for Fort Edward & put yourself under Capt Duncan Campbels Orders.

We have had no arrivals from Philadelphia lately, but this much Seems to be certain that Genll Clinton Superceded Sir Wm How in the Chiefe Command Since which it is reported the Rebels has received a greater Overthro then any Since the commencement of the rebellion - The best news you can hear is that the Regt is Established and the worst that you & John McLean has lost your Chance for the Company, it being given to Capt McNichols. I am Dear Lundin Yours Sincerely A. McD.


To ENSN. JAS. ROBERTSON.

Halifax May 1778 a Coppy

DEAR SIR
There being a Necessity for Relieving Lieutt Lunden from the command of the Detachment of our Battalion at Fort How on the River St Johns, On receipt hereof you will Sattle every thing with him, in so far as may Depende on both of you previous to his Departure receive from him what Orders he may have relating to the privat Oeconomy of the Detachment & it's affaires & thereafter Conduct yourself under Command of major Studholm or whoever will command in the Fort During your time.

As you are by this order to have the command of a larger detachment then commonly falls to the Share of a Subaltern, I beg leave to put you in minde that in the present State of publick affairs, even privat Soldiers, placed at an advanced frontier post (from the, Encouragement offer'd by our Enemys of which the Soldiers are not ignorant) do Very readily come to feell their own Importance which begets a Disposition to Insolence & Discontentment, of which the ende is Mutiny and Desertion & of course terminats in a Disgracefull punishment or an Ignominious Death Wittness the late affairs at that very fort - Now Sir to prevent Discontent and at the same time to maintain proper dissplin are the parts of an officers Duty which on that command you will be called upon to Exert.

Justice Leaning rather toward Mercy then to Severity with affability & attention to the men are the Only Necessary points - Do all you can to supply their wants reasonably - When they apply to you, answer them Kindly & without Harshness. When you must refuse their Demands do it with an apparent regret and take opportunitys of Giving Satisfactory reasons for it, do not be too ready to punish them unless for Crimes that will be allowed at all hands - when it becomes necessary to pass over their faults rathere do not Seem to know them - when you must punish them do it with regret - accompanied with Advice & Instruction.

In short let them love & fear you as they would a kinde parent - You may See what I aim at enforcing - I might writt a Volum on the head, but your own Good sence will Suggest more to you then my pen is Capable of Doing & as you will be at paines to conform to its dictates, I Doubt not your People will act accordingly and avoide the Rock the Capts Split on, especially as the men consist of the most unexceptionable of the Battalion. I am Dear James Your reall friende & most Humble servant A. M D.

P.S. you have been too much accustomed to be under
command to render it Necessary for me to advise your
Strict obedience to Major Studholm or the commanding officers orders.

He is an old officer and much of Gentleman and on account of your uncle & your own good behavior will (I doubt not) Show you every civility in his Power - Adieue

Return to Index